video poker

Video Poker Guide - Learn, Play, then Win with the Help of Our Guide

One of the more fascinating casino games online comes to us through Video Poker. The popularity of this platform never diminishes and thusly, why we have formed our own video poker guide to help new players learn the rules, get the game free and much more.

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The History of Video Poker: A look at the birth of a game which goes back as far as 1901

To help you learn and understand the wider picture of Video Poker, we head back in time to look at the birth of the idea and see what lead to its build-up which now brings joy to millions of players from around the globe.

How it all started

We have to head as far back as 1981 with the development of the first machine which was built by the Sittman and Pitt company based out of Brooklyn, America. They invented the five-reel cabinet which held ten images of playing cards on each of the reels.

Users would deposit a coin into the slot and pull the lever located to the side paneling of the contraption. The reels would then rotate to then eventually stop to reveal the card symbols.

8-years later the Card Bell cabinet was invented and dispensed 20 coins on a Royal Flush, which was twice as much as the original machine. We then jump forward to 1903 and the Skill Draw game gave users a brand new feature – the Hold option. Users could hold any number of reels that could form the perfect winning hand, this then would instantly give birth to the concept of strategy within the dynamics of the game.

By this point in the history of the platform, poker was very much the preferred option of the public. As gambling was not legal in many of the states at the time, winnings, in some places, had to be done in the form of gifts including alcohol and cigarettes.

The game was far from complete. The machines built held 5 reels, each with 10 symbols meaning only 50 cards of a 52 deck were being used. At the time, many machines had the 10 of spades and the jack of hearts missing.

When the 70s spun round, Dale Electronics made the perfect Video poker machine aptly named the Poker-Matic. Casinos were soon littered with these cabinets and come the mid70s Bally Gaming gave it the name Video Poker through its device. This machine was rejected at first, with casinos fearing it wouldn’t work from the familiar slot mechanics which came before the now updated cabinet. It wasn’t until the 80s that this updated version went into full production.

Modern Gaming

To play video poker nowadays, a lot has changed. Access to casino games no longer means taking the time to travel. No actual physical form of currency needs to be carried or used and it’s there online, 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Moreover, you don't actually need any real money to play your favorite table games - with free video poker you have plenty of time to practice for free in demo mode.

The design had gone digitalized in the mid90s, the Internet platform was able to make it a 52 card deck and took away the look of the reel payout and put the game into a familiar gaming environment where players could see a table, see the chips and the cards being dealt out. The option to hold parts of your hand remained and as the Internet software became progressively influential, the world of live streaming added to the game’s history.

Our guide to video poker games presents all the key features of the game to better your experience

video poker guide

The video poker game is one of the most played features throughout the history of casinos. We made our video poker guide to help players wishing to experience and play video poker with full clarity and knowledge about what the machine is about and how to approach it the right way.

The payout might not be the largest in the business, there is no one singular jackpot to scoop after a few goes. Video poker is a blend of card gaming and slots, but which gives you the best of both worlds. Your first is the slot factor, ease of gameplay, and speed, the second factor is the odds which cards usually bring to a game.

Our complete guide does break into sections, here we give you a brief of specific key topics regarding vital must-know insight to the key components of online video poker. You can choose to read more on each of the categories below by selecting the highlighted links to open the relevant article.

In them, you’ll read and learn all about what constitutes as a Straight hand and how it differs from a Straight Flush. You’ll have access to the rules of play, information on strategies which you can practice on with our demo poker slot machines. Once you are completed with our guide, you’ll be in a far greater place to win some money and through the free bonuses, we provide from the top casinos online.

Video Poker Rules

We discuss the Video Poker Rules in full detail inside our additional article. There you’ll find a better understanding of how the game is played both on the virtual and live platform. We also discuss the odds which come for each hand, so you know what cards to aim for and know which is the better hand, Royal Flush or Straight flush?

Knowing the rules first before playing is the best tactical approach. This way you won’t waste any bonuses offered whilst learning the casino games. You’ll also save your own funds until they are needed to play with.

Video Poker Strategy

Is there any form of strategy in gaming? You bet there is! It is not all about chance and we give you a full article on how this is so. We cover interesting theories and tactics players take with them into the online casinos. Learn how to double your bankroll before playing and how to prolong your time on the machines equalling more wins.

You can also take your newly found Video Poker Strategy to the high-stake live tables and better your returns from the online casinos you’ll be playing in.

Deuces Wild Video Poker

One of the most popular video poker games is Deuces Wild Video Poker, but is it the best? We put the answer on hold here, but you can read our article on the variant which offers players the experience via machine and live table. Our review of this game discusses the rules of the card variant, the strategy behind it, and offers free demos to test and enjoy.

Jacks or Better

Considered to be one of the best poker machines by regular players is the Jacks or Better machines. Jacks or Better is more commonly played than Deuces Wild and you can read all about it within the review, which looks at why it could be a better game than deuces, you also have house rules, free bonuses to keep you in the game and strategies which can test our through our selection of free games. Which leads us nicely onto our next section.

We’ll show you where to play video poker for free! No payments and no downloading needed

Yes, you can now access free gaming platforms to bet on through both our demo machines and those which are found in the top 10 casinos online. Experience the full range of titles without making any payment or requirement to download extra software which just clogs up your device with needless malware attached.

Here we invite you to explore this opportunity, which is a must for any new player that wishes to draw their experience inside of a risk-free service.

Demo Machines

Access over 50 online video poker machines with titles that include Double Jackpot Poker, Bonus Poker Deluxe, Wild Viking, Multi Hands Jacks or Better, 2 Ways Royal, All American and Vegas Joker 4Up. High-quality titles and platform displaying all the wonderful variant of this classic card game. You can spend as much time as you want to play and experimenting in so many different ways, testing out strategies and creating your own to keep hold of.

With fifty titles available, even if you only enjoy three, you can take these key titles and find them in the casino to play with your bonus allowance.

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How it Works

free online video poker

► Click on the picture to access the FREE version of the game ◄

Example: Jacks or Better 52 Hand by Real Time Gaming

Click the title to play for free, once the game loads, you’ll be faced with a series of tables and buttons which at this point won’t make much sense, so from top to bottom discuss and explain what each part of the game is.

Show Paytable: Click here to reveal what the hands are and their value. For example, Royal Flush with single bets comes in at 250 x your wager. A Two Pair equals 2 x your bet. You can keep referring back to this during the game but you can select ‘Hide Table’ for now.

Winnings: Below the pay table is your Winnings Chart listing in order the hands you have won. Remember this is 52 hand, not a 52-card deck, so you play with 52 separate hands which will boost your win rate. What you hit shows on this winnings chart.

The Game Window: Within the yellow windows, are where the 52 hands will display once your bet is confirmed and you press Deal.

Your Hand: Below the yellow window is your five cards with the three action buttons below. Bet One, Deal, and Bet Max. These buttons will alter during the course of the game to change your moves.

Wager: To the right of the window is your stake counter, it defaults at $0.50 but ranges from $0.05 up to $1.00.

Score Boards: Displaying your Credits Won, Coins Played, Total Coins and your Balance.

First, you select the value of the bet, then you can select the amount of coins you wish to bet with by tapping the Bet One button repeatedly to find the level you want to wager. You’ll see the Coins Paid counter change along with the Total Coins and Balance. The higher you pay the higher the value of the Winnings are. You’ll see this also changes when you keep clicking on the Bet One button. On one single bet, a three of a kind hand, the return is x3 the wager. If you play with 5 coins, the card winning value becomes x15.

Once happy with the amount you’re wagering, press Deal. Your hand with be revealed and the action button changes to Draw. Pressing Draw fills the Game Window with all 52 hands. The round automatically ends once your Winnings have ceased adding up. To replay, you can either click Draw, which will use the same betting values, or you can completely restart by changing the wagering value to a higher or lower amount.

The Bonuses

Your free gaming options continue you with online bonus allowances that allow you to keep any of the winnings made!

Bonus offers are open to both new registered members and those already assigned to the operator. You’ll find information on the specific bonuses a casino provides from our reviews, alternatively, you can check directly on their promotions page. You can view this without needing to sign up first.

Here are some of the most popular ones you’ll find throughout the top 10 casinos recommended by

✅ Welcome bonuses

✅ Free Spins

✅ No deposit bonuses

✅ VIP rewards

✅ Loyalty bonuses

Note: All terms and conditions must be read prior to use to see if they are eligible at the time for Video Poker games.

Types of Bonuses

The Welcome Package

For video poker players, this can earn you two types of bonus, a cash injection and a series of free spins for your favourite titles. The package usually comes with tiered depositing options, which make it easier for those opting in to increase their chances of winning.

Free Spins

These can be used across all Video Poker machines. The number of spins is relative to the casino and the promotion at the time. Spins can start as little as 5 but can be as high as 500!!!

Matched Deposit

What you pay in will be returned by the casino of your choice as a percentage. So, this could be a 100% return, 200%, even 500%. This is great insurance to boost the bankroll and budget you have.

No Deposit

With this type of offer, you won’t need to pay anything into the casino. You simply claim your allowance and use minimal rewards to enjoy free gaming. It could be $25.00 to put into your favourite machine or up to 50 free spins.

VIP Rewards

If you play video poker all the time, then you’ll find that the operator will reward you with tailored bonuses for free games. This is part of the loyalty scheme each and every casino has to keep customer satisfaction high.

Refer a Friend

Get a friend or colleague to join the site you’re at and scoop extra finances to further your free experience.

Exclusive High Roller Bonus

If you want the biggest return of them all, then the high roller is like the welcome package on steroids. More money, more free spins, more chance of winning. Users opting in will need to deposit a bit more than they would for a basic welcome bonus.

Poker Review: Our own experience of online video poker both through demos and real money gaming

We took a player from our own office which has yet to experience any of the machines through our demos or online casinos. Karen Newport is our overseas journalist that will be tasked with trying video poker for the first time and telling us all about it.

“Well, as much as I enjoyed the time playing, I didn’t make any great returns on the games held inside our demo list. I tried each machine, giving them 20 games each. I figured that if I could find the one which provided a higher frequency of wins, then that would be the one to play in the casino. The problem is, there were all about the same. My winning ratios were about 55:45. On reflection, I may not have played enough hands to get a better understanding of which is the better game in the long run. Anyway, I outdid the house edge by a slight margin, but I’m not too worried and demons don’t pay.

It was kind of interesting trying to figure out how winning was possible thankfully I had loads of free coins to experiment with. I found that the most common hand I was winning from was the pair hand or two pair, I think it’s called.

Of the options available, I prefer the multi-hand titles, it makes winning a bigger prospect. Though not initially my kind of game that I would play, I would pay it more attention if the opportunity came up again. Hopefully to turn the free coins into real ones.”

Video Poker Summary: Rounding up our online video poker guide with concluding tips and FAQs

You have now reached the final part of the guide. We have touched on a whole range of subjects, but the learning doesn’t stop here, as the guide has many more articles to draw inspiration from.

Be sure to read the information on the rules, the strategies, the review of deuces wild and jacks or better. From them, you’ll have a clearer picture of how these machines are built just like slot machines, what types of wild payouts you can get on the right games, and which machines are built with better odds.

We’ll leave you now with some FAQs and top tips to help you achieve real money payouts hereafter.

5.1 FAQ

  • Q: Is there live video poker? A: Not within any of the top casinos we have recommended, but there any be a couple of niche operators out there that provide some live platform for this.
  • Q: How are the machines programmed? A: There are two programs RTP and RNG. You’ll mostly find that a majority of machines are RNG (Random Number Generator) systems which as the name suggests, picks wins within the game randomly.
  • Q: How is it different from slots? A: The programming and the rudimentary form of play are exactly the same. The rotation of slot reels is no different to how the cards are revealed the process of random outcome is the exact same. Where slots are more grandiose and have features and jackpots, the play is the same. The obvious difference is that of the subject used to create the game.
  • Q: Is there a strategy for this option? A: Yes, there is. It is not all luck, algorithms work off influences made by the player. If you increase your bet value, the machine is programmed to take this into consideration. Practice counts for much of people’s success, so there is indeed room for strategical influences.
  • Q: What is the highest win? A: A Royal Flush, for the majority, pays out at 4000x your wager. This makes it the highest single hand win if you play with a 5-coin value at the max bet.

Top Tips

  • Look out for video poker games linked to progressive jackpots. These rare specials carry with them Multi-million prizes you won’t get from traditional machines.
  • Practice with demo games. Learn which has been built with easier programming and take that knowledge to the casino with you.
  • If you find a tournament then take part, events like this offer a pool-prize which means even if you finished 8th, you will still win something.
  • Bonuses are a must to help you save costs, cut risks, and to win real money for nothing.
  • Never chase a straight/flush by holding three cards, it rarely works and puts you in losing position. Keep as many winning hands as possible, these small amounts add up!

Click the links to read more on this subject and have fun playing video poker either through the top online casinos or here at Casino Bonuses Index. Best of Luck.


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